Why Buhari/Osinbajo are boycotting inauguration ceremonies

By Ayoola Mudasiru May 23, 2015 14:24

Why Buhari/Osinbajo are boycotting inauguration ceremonies

President-elect Muhammadu Buhari, on Friday, chose to follow in the footsteps of his Vice, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, by being absent from the 2015 Presidential Inauguration Special Jumma’at Prayers held at the National Mosque.

This is the first official transition programme ahead of the May 29 hand over date by President Goodluck Jonathan.

Last Sunday, Osinbajo was conspicuously absent at the farewell service organized for President Jonathan and his family at the Aso Villa Chapel.

He gave no viable reason for his absence, and sent Pastor Emmanuel Ibitaye of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, in his stead.

SEE: Why Osinbajo, APC shunned Jonathan Aso Rock Chapel handover

Buhari like the Vice President-elect chose to stay away, and sent former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar to represent him. Buhari, few days ago, flew to the United Kingdom.

Garba Shehu, Campaign Spokesperson to the President-elect said prior to taking over Government on May 29, he travelled to “rest.”

“He is expected back in the country a few days before the inauguration, refreshed and ready to hit the ground running once he is sworn into office,” Shehu said.

This is the latest in a long line of actions by the All Progressives Congress, APC, and the incoming administration to undermine and show disregard for the outgoing administration.

Despite these overt actions and showing disdain for the outgoing administration, President Jonathan and his team have handled it all with good grace.

Rather than boycott the Friday event the same way Osinbajo boycotted last Sunday’s event, Vice President Namadi Sambo, along with the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Senator Bala Mohammed, were front and centre.

Sambo implored Nigerians to sustain their support and prayers for the success of the incoming administration of President-elect Buhari.

“We are praying for the successful inauguration of incoming administration of our President-elect Muhammadu Buhari and pray for the country for peace and development and for Allah’s guidance for the incoming administration to continue the progress and development of Nigeria,” Sambo said.

Atiku on his part expressed happiness that the special prayers went well and commended Nigerians for their supports, and that they are looking forward to a successful transition and inauguration on May 29.

“I am here to represent the President-elect with Governor (Aziz) Yari of Zamfara and some of the Governors that accompany me.

“The prayers have gone on very well, we are grateful for all the support and cooperation of all Nigerians. We have prayed to have a successful transfer of power on the Inauguration Day which is on the 29th of May this year insha Allah,” Atiku said.

Despite Osinbajo’s claim of other engagements, a question that begs to be answered is, how busy can an incoming Vice-President be on a Sunday, to attend an event that the sitting President was hosting?

Buhari’s sudden hiatus to the UK to “rest” shows that he and his team, have deliberately skewed their priorities, to ridicule the office of the President which he starts to occupy in less than 5 days.

It is not yet clear why the incoming administration chooses to act in such a manner, but speculations are rife that all these absences by Buhari and his vice are deliberate strategies to embarrass the outgoing Government which they obviously hold in low esteem.